Assange charged for 17 counts under the espionage act

Both the U.K. and Sweden have laws against extraditing people for espionage or if they face the death penalty. Will those two countries break their laws for the US to get its pound of flesh? The U.K. courts have previous precedent against extraditing one of their citizens to the US because he would have been charged under the espionage act. (source)

Share
up
30 users have voted.

Comments

snoopydawg's picture

Amnesty International declares Julian Assange “not a prisoner of conscience”

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, a multi-award-winning investigative journalist and publisher, is locked up in HM Prison Belmarsh in London in solitary confinement. US extradition proceedings have begun. If extradited, he will face charges under the Espionage Act for publishing information that exposed US war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The charges being prepared by the US Department of Justice carry the death penalty.

Chelsea Manning, who courageously blew the whistle on US atrocities by giving information to WikiLeaks, endured seven years of torture in a military prison and was jailed again last week for refusing to testify against Assange.

But according to Amnesty International (AI), neither Assange nor Manning are “prisoners of conscience” and their defence is not being actively pursued by the human rights charity.

In a letter to the Julian Assange Defence Committee (JADC) on May 17, Amnesty International UK declared, “Julian Assange's case is a case we're monitoring closely but not actively working on. Amnesty International does not consider Julian Assange to be a Prisoner of Conscience.”

AI’s curtly worded letter followed an urgent appeal by Maxine Walker on behalf of the JADC. Her letter drew attention to multiple human rights violations against Assange. “We cannot state strongly enough that Julian Assange is in great peril”, she wrote.

Walker cited AI’s April 11 statement that “Assange should not be extradited or subjected to any other transfer to the USA, where there are concerns that he would face a real risk of serious human rights violations due to his work with Wikileaks.”

Since then, Walker challenged, “no further statements appear to have been made by you… His name appears not to have been mentioned in your material for World Press Freedom Day, an extraordinary omission given his current situation and that Julian Assange was awarded the 2009 Amnesty International UK Media Award for New Media.”

Her letter continued: “The UK government has ignored, indeed poured scorn, on the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention 2015 ruling that ‘the deprivation of liberty of Mr. Assange is arbitrary and in contravention of articles 9 and 10 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights’.”

The UN Working Group, Walker pointed out, had described Assange’s imprisonment in Belmarsh as having “furthered the arbitrary deprivation of liberty of Mr. Assange.” They judged his 50-week sentence in a supermax prison had “contravene[d] the principles of necessity and proportionality envisaged by the human rights standards.”

Walker’s letter concluded, “It is urgent that organisations concerned with human rights should become more vocal and active on this case. One statement is not adequate to deal with the threats to Julian Assange and the wider implications for free speech, freedom of information and the protection of journalists.”

This is a travesty.

For nearly nine years, bogus “rape” and “sexual molestation” allegations against Assange have been wielded by Sweden and Britain to smear the WikiLeaks founder and secure his extradition to the US. Assange was always willing to travel to Sweden to answer the allegations against him, but Swedish authorities refused to guarantee against his onward extradition under fast-track “temporary surrender” arrangements in place with the US. It was the threat of US extradition which forced Assange to seek political asylum in Ecuador.

Assange has already been questioned by Swedish police and prosecutors—in August 2010 in Stockholm and at Ecuador’s embassy in London in November 2016. On both occasions, the preliminary investigation was closed with not a single charge laid. Under Swedish law, Assange can be charged prior to an extradition request. Yet even now, Sweden has submitted no charges and is seeking a European Arrest Warrant for blatantly political objectives.

AI deliberately conceals the political context of Assange and Manning’s incarceration: international geopolitics, illegal wars of occupation, regime change, assassination threats by US politicians against Assange—none of this exists. Having pointed to Sweden, AI simply states that it does not regard the world’s most persecuted journalist a Prisoner of Conscience. It believes he, “should not be extradited to the USA, where he faces a real risk of serious human rights violations… due to his work with Wikileaks.” It’s just that they are not “actively” pursuing the case.
....
AI defines a Prisoner of Conscience as “someone who has not used or advocated violence but is imprisoned because of who they are (sexual orientation, ethnic, national or social origin, language, birth, colour, sex or economic status) or what they believe (religious, political or other conscientiously held beliefs).”

Assange and Manning have been thrown in prison because of their “conscientiously held beliefs” that all people have the right to know about war crimes, state corruption, mass surveillance and antidemocratic intrigues by the world’s most powerful states. “I can either go to jail or betray my principles,” Manning has explained. “I would rather starve to death than change my opinion.”

If Assange and Manning are not prisoners of conscience, then who is?

up
31 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Eagles92's picture

@snoopydawg Et tu, Amnesty International?!

Though I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

I don't know what else to say. This is beyond travesty. The entire world needs to rise up in unison.

up
27 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@Eagles92

The most egregious violations of Assange’s rights relate to the following principles: Article 3: Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person; Article 5: No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment; Article 9: No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile; Article 10: Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him; Article 14: Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution; Article 15: No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality; Article 17: No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property; Article 19: Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

Written in 1948, the preamble to the UDHR states that “it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law.” Emerging from the blood and filth of fascism and a World War that claimed 60 million lives, the imperialist powers erected an international framework of economic, political and legal mechanisms to guard against a new descent into war, social upheaval and revolution.

If the framers of the UDHR sought insurance against recourse to “rebellion”, this aim was shared by those who established Amnesty International. Its founder, barrister Peter Benenson, wrote in 1960, “The important thing is to mobilise public opinion quickly and widely, before a government is caught up in the vicious spiral caused by its own repression and is faced with impending civil war.” It was also important to choose POCs carefully: “The technique of publicising the personal stories of a number of prisoners of contrasting politics is a new one. It has been adopted to avoid the fate of previous amnesty campaigns, which so often have become more concerned with publicising the political views of the imprisoned than with humanitarian purposes.”

The unstated premise—clear in AI’s silence on Manning and Chelsea—is that the “political views” of these two prisoners should not be publicised and the institutions of western capitalist “democracy” must be defended, especially from any popular and revolutionary threat from below. Eight years ago, Amnesty International hailed WikiLeaks and the Guardian for their role in publishing documents that played a “catalytic role” in sparking the 2011 Arab Spring, especially in Tunisia. Today, the Guardian is the Witchfinder General, gruesomely smearing Assange as a Russian stooge and “rapist”, while AI has thrown Assange and Manning to the wolves.

Remember the outrage when Kasshogi was dismembered by the Saudis from every main stream journalist? Sadly every one of them has stayed silent on what's happening to Julian and Chelsea.

up
30 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

wendy davis's picture

@snoopydawg

tiernan was incorrect, which is why i've been asking if your/wikileaks retweet had mentioned 'death penalty'. this morning andre damon at wsws is up with 'New charges against Julian Assange under the Espionage Act criminalize journalism' 24 May 2019, and he's read and commented on two pieces at the NYT, *and* he's read the indictment. the most salient sections:

"The new charges supersede a previous indictment against Assange released in April, related to alleged computer hacking and carrying no more than five years in prison. These charges were simply a fig leaf to give Ecuadorian government cover for ejecting Assange from its embassy in London.

The charges carry up to a combined 170 years in prison. However, there is nothing to prevent US authorities from bringing additional charges bearing the death penalty if he is extradited to the United States from his current imprisonment in the UK."

"Notably, several of the charges pertain specifically to obtaining and publishing documents related to the US government’s torture at Guantanamo Bay and other sites throughout the world. Assange sought to publish, according to the indictment, “operating and interrogation procedures at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; documents relating to Guantanamo detainees,” and “CIA detainee interrogation videos.”

Those who carried out these crimes have gone unpunished, and in many cases—including that of current CIA Director Gina Haspel—retain posts at the highest levels of the American state. The move marks the first time that a journalist has been charged under the 1917 Espionage Act."

"The New York Times published an editorial Thursday night stating that the indictment “is a marked escalation in the effort to prosecute Mr. Assange, one that could have a chilling effect on American journalism as it has been practiced for generations. It is aimed straight at the heart of the First Amendment,” which protects “the ability of publishes to provide the public with the truth.”

The editorial concludes that the “case now represents a threat to freedom of expression and, with it, the resilience of American democracy itself.”

However, for the last decade, the Times’ coverage of the persecution of Assange has been compromised by malicious hostility to the WikiLeaks publisher. Indeed, in the very editorial criticizing the attack on the First Amendment, the Times lends credence to the Justice Department’s case, declaring that “there is much to be troubled by in Mr. Assange’s methods and motives, which remain murky.”

In its accompanying “news” article, the Times states as fact that Assange has “morphed” into a “tool of Russia’s election interference,” and that WikiLeaks “published Democratic emails stolen by Russia as part of its covert efforts to help elect President Trump.” The anti-Russia narrative, promoted by the Democratic Party and the media, has been used not only to justify the persecution of Assange, but also to create the framework for internet censorship and other attacks on free speech."

"Assange, the Times states in its news article, is not a “conventional journalist.” Yes, he is not “conventional” because he does what the corporate media dares not do—fearlessly expose the crimes of the American state. Over the past two decades, the media, led by the Times, has transformed itself into an apologist and propagandist for the United States’ endless wars.

This reality was summed up by the boast by former Times Editor Bill Keller in 2010 that “Freedom of the press includes freedom not to publish, and that is a freedom we exercise with some regularity.” Assange and a small number of other journalists have refused to go down that road."

up
5 users have voted.

@wendy davis @wendy davis
Again, what interference? Democrats say the Mueller report documents it, but the released parts don't.
Such a damning report should be made public so we can all see for ourselves. Enough of the Star Chamber jurisprudence.

EDIT:
Perhaps like the Scopes Trial we should be glad this is happening so the deceit and lies can be seen for what they are. Assange is is a spy for releasing Gitmo torture videos? Then the defense should demand that the jury see those videos so they can evaluate for themselves the national security aspects. After all, the videos are now in the wild anyway.

up
6 users have voted.
wendy davis's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

agree, gawd's blood. also i just added kevin zeese's clarification to the indictment's claims:

"The new indictment (read the indictment here) says Assange released a list of his organization’s “Most Wanted Leaks” to encourage people to provide military and intelligence documents. According to the indictment, Manning appeared to have responded to Assange’s public solicitation, searching the classified Pentagon network for some of the same terms highlighted by WikiLeaks, such as “interrogation videos.” The indictment describes a conspiracy where “Assange, WikiLeaks affiliates and Manning shared the common objective to subvert lawful restrictions on classified information and to publicly disseminate it.”

up
3 users have voted.

@wendy davis
directly communicated? If the "conspiracy" consists of reading public statements?
Then many readers of this blog are conspirators also. I think that theory stretches the first amendment to the breaking point.

up
3 users have voted.
wendy davis's picture

@wendy davis

on the popular resistance newsletter today further clarifies damon above:

"Notably, several of the charges pertain specifically to obtaining and publishing documents related to the US government’s torture at Guantanamo Bay and other sites throughout the world. Assange sought to publish, according to the indictment, “operating and interrogation procedures at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; documents relating to Guantanamo detainees,” and “CIA detainee interrogation videos.”

from kevin zeese:

"The new indictment (read the indictment here) says Assange released a list of his organization’s “Most Wanted Leaks” to encourage people to provide military and intelligence documents. According to the indictment, Manning appeared to have responded to Assange’s public solicitation, searching the classified Pentagon network for some of the same terms highlighted by WikiLeaks, such as “interrogation videos.”

The indictment describes a conspiracy where “Assange, WikiLeaks affiliates and Manning shared the common objective to subvert lawful restrictions on classified information and to publicly disseminate it.

the 37 page indictment pdf is here for any of you with the desire and/or wherewithal to search it.

up
3 users have voted.

@snoopydawg I imagine Amnesty is looking out for those donor dollars. They can scream to high heaven about other countries' abuses but not the good old USA, it's simply not done, at least not in a way that truly confronts power. From what little I have read about Amnesty they sold out a long time ago, just like so many of the green groups that really aren't. And since we're talking rape allegations against Assange, from what the facts say FALSE allegations but well, they just don't dare point that out, lose too many good donors that way..... It's important to play that ID Pol card now, don't wanna piss off the pink pussy hat crowd.

A pathetic and I would add ignorant nation, ruled by stupidity and wallowing happily in it like WWF "wrestlers" in their own shit (where the old adage is wallowing like a pig that's an insult to the pig here since pigs don't wallow in their own shit but humans sure as hell do seem to enjoy it, especially of the USAin variety).

up
23 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@lizzyh7

Julian was free to leave Sweden after they decided that there wasn't anything to charge him for. Pathetic and ignorant is exactly what people are if they are cheering this action. The dumb f'ck s don't remember that Julian and Chelsea exposed the war crimes of the Bush administration. Instead they think that he's been charged because he helped Russia get Trump elected. Just imagine if it had been Bernie's campaign that rigged the primary against Herheinous and Assange showed them the proof? Same thing happened to Greenwald. When he was exposing Cheney's dirt they were all for it, but once he exposed Obama's.... F'cking hypocrites.

ETA there are many links in a comment on this article that describes how AI has sold out. One says that the person who created it resigned after it was infiltrated by the CIA. And that they helped spread the false accusations that Iraqi troops were throwing babies out of incubators. Remember that? The woman who said that in court was never in Kuwait to see that happen. She was a student in NYC IIRC.

Freedom Rider: Human Rights Industry Protects Imperialism

When so-called Human Rights organizations are financed by the one percent they dependably echo the priorities and prejudices of their influential sponsors. So it is that Amnesty International is an energetic source of war propaganda on behalf of US imperial efforts in the Middle East and elsewhere. Their "report" of a supposed "human slaughterhouse" operated by the Syrian regime is the latest installment in a campaign to justify US intervention in the Middle East.

Humanity is in desperate need of individuals and organizations to speak up for their right to live free from the threat of state violence. Instead we have a human rights industrial complex which speaks for the powerful and tells lies in order to justify their aggressions. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch are at the top of this infamous list. They have a pattern and practice of giving cover for regime change schemes hatched by the United States, NATO partners and gulf monarchies like Saudi Arabia.

Amnesty International recently released a report “Human Slaughterhouse: Mass Hangings and Extermination at Saydnaya Prison Syria” which claimed that the Syrian government executed between 5,000 and 13,000 people over a five-year period. The report is based on anonymous sources outside of Syria, hearsay, and the dubious use of satellite photos reminiscent of Colin Powell’s performance at the United Nations in 2003. There is plenty of hyperbolic language like “slaughterhouse” and “extermination” but scant evidence of the serious charges being made.

Margaret goes on to say that human rights watch has also sold out. I knew that, but not to the extent.

up
21 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@lizzyh7

to those sociopathic monsters. Actually pro wrestlers are more honest in their fictional enterprise than politicians and military men are in their real-word enterprises...

up
1 user has voted.

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

@snoopydawg Not prisoners of conscience, AI? Well they sure as hell weren't in it for the money now were they? I hope no one ever forgets this organization's condemnation of Assange and Manning as they served indefinite prison sentences under conditions of torture.

AI is nothing but organized virtue signaling for the benefit of the oligarchy.

up
21 users have voted.
Cassiodorus's picture

@snoopydawg Is there someone on the inside? Part of me thinks that such information needs to be broadcast on a counter-Internet, one that circulates on devices that haven't been pre-hacked by the NSA...

up
4 users have voted.

"The degree to which liberals are coming to inhabit an alternate reality, impenetrable by facts or reason, is actually frightening." -- Steve Maher

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3XUzKlhDZDM&t=199s
Don't hold your breath waiting for Bernie on this subject.

up
16 users have voted.

chuck utzman

TULSI 2020

Eagles92's picture

@chuckutzman @chuckutzman With all due respect, we shouldn't be framing this in terms of which puppet candidate for 2020 would do what. Assange isn't a rhetorical device. What's happening to him is a crisis right now.

(Edited for extraneous word. I blame furious fingers).

up
20 users have voted.
wendy davis's picture

@Eagles92

and thank you. on later edit: why now tulsi? have you seen the msnbc poll on wikileaks on twitter noting that 89% of USians don't think assange should be prosecuted?

up
14 users have voted.
Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@wendy davis

Unless it's a wild outlier, 89% against prosecution would suggest that it's not the abysmal character of the American people that is responsible for these atrocities, but rather the absymal character of the U.S. ruling class and their chief ministers: politicians and the press.

up
3 users have voted.

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

wendy davis's picture

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal

poll, but i was wrong, it was 94%. i hadn't taken time to check the internals of the poll, but not many days later wikileaks did retweet tulsi's non-prosecution position. all i'm asking is 'why now?' after all these years he's been in such dire jeopardy?

same for this 'news' at the intercept, such great support for assange, i mean for the trump resistance, after any number of hits and smears their 'journalists' did on assange:

“Let me be clear: it is a disturbing attack on the First Amendment for the Trump administration to decide who is or is not a reporter for the purposes of a criminal prosecution,” Sanders wrote in a tweet Friday afternoon after The Intercept contacted his office for comment. “Donald Trump must obey the Constitution, which protects the publication of news about our government.”

Warren distanced herself from Assange but condemned the Justice Department’s move to curtail press freedom. “Assange is a bad actor who has harmed U.S. national security — and he should be held accountable,” Warren said in a statement. “But Trump should not be using this case as a pretext to wage war on the First Amendment and go after the free press who hold the powerful accountable everyday.”

“This is not about Julian Assange,” Wyden said in a statement. “This is about the use of the Espionage Act to charge a recipient and publisher of classified information. I am extremely concerned about the precedent this may set and potential dangers to the work of journalists and the First Amendment.”

kinda rachel maddow and her 'new mind', no?

up
2 users have voted.
thanatokephaloides's picture

@Eagles92

Not the point With all due respect, we shouldn't be framing this in terms of which puppet candidate for 2020 would do what. Assange isn't a rhetorical device. What's happening to him is a crisis right now.

But what Tulsi Gabbard is trying to do is address the root cause of Julian Assange's problems (the power of the military-industrial-political complex to pre-censor what we're allowed to hear about and punish those who publish beyond those norms) while making it clear that it's quite reasonable to maintain that Assange has done nothing wrong.

If I had the freebie publicity to give that Tulsi Gabbard does, I'd be doing just what she did. Thoth only knows there's plenty of anti-Assange bias out there; we ought not deprecate folks who argue in his favor in public.

up
15 users have voted.

"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

Eagles92's picture

@thanatokephaloides Tulsi is right.

What I bristle against is having one of the first comments about a horrifying, immediate issue seek directly to tie it to the horse race. This isn't a "my candidate is better than yours!" moment, which is exactly how it read to me.

Of course, everyone's MMV.

up
5 users have voted.
wendy davis's picture

RT.com fleshed it out:

Up to 170 yrs in prison: US slaps Julian Assange with 17 more charges under Espionage Act, 23 May, 2019

"The new indictment, made public on Thursday, relates to US documents WikiLeaks published in 2010, and alleges Assange revealed the names of individuals who were working with the US government, thus endangering their lives.

"The superseding indictment alleges that Assange was complicit with Chelsea Manning, a former intelligence analyst in the US Army, in unlawfully obtaining and disclosing classified documents related to the national defense," the Department of Justice said in a statement.

“The department takes seriously the role of journalists in our democracy and we thank you for it. It has not and never has been the department’s policy to target them for reporting. But Julian Assange is no journalist,” said John Demers, head of the DOJ’s National Security Division.

The new charges expand the original one-count indictment of conspiracy to hack into US government computers, announced in March, prior to Assange’s arrest in London. He faces up to 10 years in prison on each count, if convicted.

Ecuador has also seized all of Assange’s personal belongings and will reportedly turn them over to the US, rejecting requests by his lawyers or WikiLeaks staff to retrieve them."

wonder who flipped on him at the GJ? testilying dumbsheit-borg?

ah, Amnesty's been battin' for the empire for a long time; maduro, afghanistan, just to name two. syria: remember cartalucci's link to their 'report' on 'The Human Slaughterhouse' amy goodman and CFR friend were recycling? to say the truth, i'd read that at wsws and had barely groaned.

with that NGO and HRW it's more noteworthy when they don't. that's why so many of us call it Shamnesty International.

up
17 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@wendy davis

no ones life was put in danger from the releases by Chelsea and Assange. The f'cking idiots on Twitter have been getting an ear full from me.

I don't see how U.K. can go against established case law, but I'm sure we'll see some tap dancing to make it happen.

up
20 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

wendy davis's picture

@snoopydawg

an egregious lie. iirc, kevin gosztola had said that at chelsea's court martial trial, the prosecutor (denise lind) even admitted that her revelations never injured anyone. i forget how far adrian lamo was in the mix for having her arrested.

anyway, if you have time, you might check kevin's twit account; he'll be weighing in soon. i would, but lordie, am i in a time-wringer.

p.s. on edit: i don't have the temperament to be on the twit machine.

p.p.s. on edit: i had an open tab on twitter, so i checked https://twitter.com/kgosztola; not yet.

up
13 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@wendy davis

I got distracted by the amnesty article and then got pissed...

I follow Kevin, but haven't seen anything from him on this.

up
8 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

wendy davis's picture

@snoopydawg

i was wrong about denise lind, but kevin explains the nuances involved here::

"This is what the judge said in the conclusion of her ruling:

“The accused’s training and experience as an all source intelligence analyst, his preparation of intelligence products while deployed in Iraq, a combat zone, using the CIDNE-1 database while contemporaneously sending the entire database to WikiLeaks for public disclosure and worldwide publication, the volume of classified information from the Department of Defense and the Department of State that the accused admitted to disclosing to WikiLeaks, and the accused’s search for and downloading of counterintelligence documents reporting the threat posed by WikiLeaks, considered together, provide some evidence from which, together with all reasonable inferences and applicable assumptions, viewed in the light most favorable to the prosecution, without an evaluation of the credibility of witnesses, could reasonably tend to establish that the accused actually knew he was dealing with the enemy and actually knew that by sending such information to WikiLeaks with the intent that it be broadcast to the public, he was knowingly providing intelligence to the enemy. The “intelligence gap” evidence in the ACIC report as well as laudable motive evidence by the accused goes to the weight of the evidence, a decision properly determined by the fact-finder.” [emphasis added]

At no point in the ruling did the judge say anything about there being “sufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Private Manning knowingly gave information to enemy groups like Al Qaeda.”

now this was in july 2013, but in more recent manning coverage, he may have been a bit more forceful on that score. and those more recent pieces were what i'd been hoping to find, rather than go thru his whole manning oeuvre.

but as far as 'Ecuador has also seized all of Assange’s personal belongings and will reportedly turn them over to the US, rejecting requests by his lawyers or WikiLeaks staff to retrieve them.', i'd stuck up a separate grisly post about all that criminal bullshit sometime in the past two or three weeks (i live in a time-warp). forensic examiners, etc.

up
5 users have voted.
Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@wendy davis @wendy davis

you can't tell the truth about U.S. military matters online. You can be tortured and indefinitely detained for that, unless you have a degree from Annenberg, a job at CNN, and Anderson Cooper's personal cell number on your speed dial.

up
2 users have voted.

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

wendy davis's picture

(@assange legal) twit account; note 'skripals', as well):

but no, snoopy, 170 years isn't precisely 'the death penalty', save that anyone would die in prison over that time. his swedish extradition hearing was moved to june 3, his US extreme rendition hearing is scheduled for june 12.

up
14 users have voted.
Not Henry Kissinger's picture

Much tougher for a British judge to approve US extradition now that there is the possibility of a death sentence, and much easier for the judge to give precedence to Swedish extradition.

I remain convinced that Trump, for all his bluster, doesn't want a Wikileaks show trial overshadowing his election run, and is doing everything he can to simply keep Assange on procedural ice until after the 2020 election.

What happens after the election is anyone's guess.

up
12 users have voted.

Peace Sells

snoopydawg's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger

It's his administration that got Ecuador to kick him out of their embassy. Pence was involved with this from the gitgo...

up
11 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Not Henry Kissinger's picture

@snoopydawg

Pence and Bolton want to waterboard him, but Bannon and the politicos don't want the headache in an election year.

So after the Brits tell Trump that their teaser conspiracy charge doesn't pass the laugh test for extradition, they all decide to compromise.

They throw the book at Assange to assuage the Security agencies and cow other whistleblowers and journalists, but they also tell the Swedes to refile on the original charge and then wait until after the refile to disclose the new indictments, so that way the Swedish hearing comes first and presumably the court rules to send him to Sweden rendering the US hearing moot.

The long term game plan is probably to extradite him from Sweden eventually, but in the meantime all the procedural red tape ties up any resolution until after election day.

All this is just a guess, but it's the only scenario that seems to make sense.

up
4 users have voted.

Peace Sells

snoopydawg's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger

Julian is locked away in Britain's worst prison in solitary confinement and who knows what is happening to him behind closed doors? I think that you are taking this too lightly. There is a very slim chance that Assange is not going to be renditioned here and after given a show trial he will be locked up for the rest of his life. That's if he isn't executed.

up
5 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Not Henry Kissinger's picture

@snoopydawg

Just saying what I think is going on.

up
3 users have voted.

Peace Sells

wendy davis's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger

now at least, the death penalty is on the table, and my understanding its that UK hone secretary javid is supposed to decide between extradition to sweden or the US if it comes to that (it will), but the 'greater charges' are suppoosed to be the determining factor, which is possibly why these crap ones have been added.

i'd had to go back to the link i'd provided up yonder on armed police grabbing assange's possessions including his legal defense papers and laptop to check, but as hannah jonnason noted: assange was never charged in sweden, and asked on may 13:

@AssangeLegal "Why did it take the Swedish prosecutor over a month since Assange's arrest to decide to reopen a preliminary investigation?”

up
2 users have voted.
Not Henry Kissinger's picture

@wendy davis

The death penalty is always on the table.

up
4 users have voted.

Peace Sells

wendy davis's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger

but what i'd meant to say was 'not on the table for now...legally'. but again, i haven't even read the long wiki page i'd provided...somewhere.

but if he's extradited to amerika, you can bet your ass there'll be more charges to come, even closer to 'treason', by way of the newly subpoenaed shulte and dumbsheit-borg who've been offered immunity from their possible crimes.

up
2 users have voted.
wendy davis's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger

behind a paywall for me, even in private mode. is that what it says: death penalty? so cassandra rules is wrong on her 170 years possibe sentence? it's a ver arcane law, i hadn't had tome to read the wiki, not that it's necessarily correct.

up
1 user has voted.
snoopydawg's picture

If the grand jury came back with 17 charges against Julian then they no longer need Chelsea to talk to them right? So she should be released immediately. Any guesses on this happening?

up
11 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

@snoopydawg for 17 charges. Were they/Are they hoping she will break and furnish them an actually death penalty charge?

up
10 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

up
1 user has voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

snoopydawg's picture

that Trump did today. Here's Robert Parry's article on this from during Obama's tenure.

ROBERT PARRY: All Investigative Journalists Do What Julian Assange Did

Worth a read.

up
5 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

something like a religious belief. A belief in the right of the public to know, which every journalist in the world could claim, seems to me to be very different from that. Much as I am heartbroken about Assange and Manning, I cannot blame AI for following its own standards.

Moreover, we are talking about a defense, not granting asylum or anything of that nature. AI is not his only source of a defense. It seems to me that journalists' associations should, and probably will, join in his defense and people from all over the world will donate to it.

I realize that my opinion will be very unpopular here. However, I must post what I believe to be true.

up
6 users have voted.

@HenryAWallace I just hate the timing, and that your explanation of their standards is way more clearly stated than theirs.
I really hate the timing, when they did not need to announce their position at all.

up
5 users have voted.

@on the cusp

that announced AI's decision was not AI but the Assange Defence Fund. And my guess would be that AI wrote the Assange Defence Fund to inform the Fund that AI would follow the case closely but not get involved (at this point) because the Fund had asked AI to get involved and AI was replying to the request.

(Because the issue is so emotionally-charged, I expected personal attacks. Thanks for not doing that.)

up
3 users have voted.
The Liberal Moonbat's picture

@HenryAWallace Still, one must wonder, if those are their standards, what the parameters are for "religious belief" - is Assange to be screwed over because his morality is internal rather than imposed? Is he to be screwed over for not doing what Anton LaVey supposedly did and making up a religion just for the legal benefits? We seem to be punishing good behavior, here (then again, that's the problem here to begin with, and seems to be the norm in today's horrifying global malocracy).

up
6 users have voted.

“Remember, when the emperor looks naked, the emperor IS naked. The truth and the lie are *not* 'sort of the same thing'.” — Daria Morgendorffer

@The Liberal Moonbat

in this instance, but the parameters of a conscientiously held belief. To parrot the language, an example might be a conscientious objector.

Quakers are conscientious objectors because of their religion. However, an atheist can qualify for conscientious objector status, if the belief is held as seriously as a devout religious person holds his or her beliefs. (Bernie applied for conscientious objector status. He seems to be an ethnic Jew and, based upon his own description of his spiritual beliefs, close to an atheist, when compared with a Quaker or an Orthodox Jew.) So can a religious person whose religion does not require him or her to refuse to serve in a war.

My prior post said something about "every journalist in the world," but even that was too restrictive. I'm not a journalist and I, too, have a deep belief in everyone's right to know. If a poll question were phrased correctly, I'm guessing just about everyone in the world would stand in favor of the right of the public to know. Would that make anyone jailed over that belief a prisoner of conscience? I don't think that is what Amnesty ever had in mind.

Remember, wikileaks was a for profit publisher when this occurred. If it were the head of the New York Times in danger of being extradited, instead of the head of wikileaks, would you have expected AI to provide a defense for the head of the NYT?

How is AI screwing Assange over, anyway? As my prior post said, I cannot blame an organization for following its own standards. It's not as though AI has excess funds and resources and nothing else to do with them. And, we are talking a defense in court, not asylum or a pardon or anything that AI can do that no one else can do. A defense in court means lawyers volunteering or someone coming up with money to pay them. I don't think either will be a problem. If you don't donate to his defense fund because of your standards for the kinds of things to which you donate, will you be screwing Assange over?

I have cried over Assange more than once over these years, including when he got arrested. So, I get the impetus to find fault with anyone who doesn't pitch in to help him in some way. However, this case does not meet AI's standards. And AI does good work, with a focus on torture and similar violations.

For example, iff it had not been for AI, I never would have known that we never stopped torturing "some folks" in black holes like Bagram after Obama got elected. Never stopped extraordinary rendition, either. Maybe no one would have, but I sure would not have.

up
2 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@HenryAWallace

@snoopydawg @snoopydawg

and applied their beliefs fairly. But the point of the article I posted doesn't think that they are doing that or upholding what they were founded on.

Written in 1948, the preamble to the UDHR states that “it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law.” Emerging from the blood and filth of fascism and a World War that claimed 60 million lives, the imperialist powers erected an international framework of economic, political and legal mechanisms to guard against a new descent into war, social upheaval and revolution.

If the framers of the UDHR sought insurance against recourse to “rebellion”, this aim was shared by those who established Amnesty International. Its founder, barrister Peter Benenson, wrote in 1960, “The important thing is to mobilise public opinion quickly and widely, before a government is caught up in the vicious spiral caused by its own repression and is faced with impending civil war.” It was also important to choose POCs carefully: “The technique of publicising the personal stories of a number of prisoners of contrasting politics is a new one. It has been adopted to avoid the fate of previous amnesty campaigns, which so often have become more concerned with publicising the political views of the imprisoned than with humanitarian purposes.”

If amnesty international is in bed with the CIA and other intelligence agencies then it should be taken into account. It really doesn't matter what amnesty does though because they are powerless to stop what is being done to Assange and Manning. The bottom line here is that Trump is going to prosecute Assange for doing journalism, but claiming something else so he can be charged. The Parry article is a good read as is the one from the BAR. Of course your opinion is welcome here.

up
5 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

@snoopydawg

thread said why.

That some writer (Laura Tiernan, whoever she is) of the World Socialist Website thinks differently than I do about whether Assange's case falls within AI's standards doesn't affect my statements.

As far as being inconsistent, the article from the World Socialist Website that you excerpted above says only that the AI has involved itself in many more cases from other countries than it has in cases from the US. Geography doesn't tell me anything about whether the AI is applying its own standards inconsistently.

For example, the US is far from perfect. However, when was the last time the US jailed anyone for having the "wrong" religious belief or stoned someone to death for being gay? So, I understand why the AI might be more involved in other countries than it is in the US. (Let's remember, no organization, including AI, has unlimited resources. Triage is necessary.) However, Ms. Tierney did not even get that detailed. She merely provided a list of countries, period. I don't know what I am supposed to do with that. She offered no analysis of the "conscientiously held belief" standard whatsoever. ("If Assange and Manning are not prisoners of conscience, then who is?" is not analysis.)

Moreover, AI has said it is not going to involve itself in Assange's defense, although it has been watching the case closely. The current defense of Assange is not even against the US (yet). It is against the UK. So, I'm not even sure what Ms. Tierney's list of countries proves.

If you know of a specific case like that of Assange where the AI helped a publisher avoid extradition, let's discuss the specifics of that case and see if it really was like Assange's case. Short of that, I don't know how anyone can say fairly that AI is not being consistent in how it applies its "conscientiously held belief" standard.

If amnesty international is in bed with the CIA and other intelligence agencies then it should be taken into account.

Of course. But "if" is a huge word. What is the evidence that AI is in bed with the CIA? Ms. Tierney's list of countries? If so, I think that's a stretch. I should perhaps add here that the AI certainly spoke out against torture by the Obama administration. Therefore, it's not as though AI says nothing about the behavior of the US in general or the CIA in particular

I'm sorry, but I don't know which Parry article discusses inconsistency by AI in applying its own "conscientiously held belief" standard. Did you link it somewhere on this thread?

up
1 user has voted.

was just released. I think that will be a "floor" for what they have in store for Assange. There was an article about a prisoner in the Colorado Super Max who died recently. After 35 years in solitary confinement. I also expect that most of the "evidence" against Assange has been re classified and testimony in court will be closed and transcripts redacted in the US press, even though the information is out there. I mean, why inform people of the shitty things our government does? It might create sympathy with the jurors.

I fear for Snowden, though he seems to have anticipated the response to his actions. When information passes through you hands about what the US does to people they deem enemies you pay attention. Maybe the US will call on the Israelis to pull an Eichmann and smuggle him out. About time they earned their keep, right?

up
5 users have voted.
gulfgal98's picture

Click on the tweet below and unroll the thread.

A more succinct tweet.

Even Charles Oertel who is certainly not a liberal had this comment.

It is beginning to appear that some MSM journos are finally concerned about the ramifications of Julian Assange's arrest, detention and charging under the Espionage Act. It may be too little, too late now.

And John Pilger has put the MSM on notice that they will be next.

up
8 users have voted.

"I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~Dr. Cornel West

"There is no instance of a nation benefitting from prolonged warfare." Sun Tzu

"Propaganda is one hell of a drug." Abby Martin

"Politicians are cowards." Mike Gravel

Eagles92's picture

@gulfgal98 And yet, where are they? Where's the frenzied and very public outrage to match that of Second Amendment enthusiasts whenever there's a whiff of something that might possibly at some point in some manner challenge that amendment?

The extent to which the American public has been successfully propagandized is staggering.

"Assange is not a journalist." Pardon my french, but fuck everyone who thinks and says that.

Though I suppose it serves a dual purpose - it justifies both his current treatment and the fact that no similar charges will be brought against the NYT, useful idiots that they are.

up
7 users have voted.
gulfgal98's picture

@Eagles92 @Eagles92 When Obama and DHS shut down Occupy, they effectively shut down the public's right to use public spaces to speak out freely. I am just one voice, but I have posted here many times about the need to protect all provisions of the First Amendment. Without the First Amendment, none of the other Rights in the Bill of Rights can be ensured.

Edit to add: Our local Peace vigil was also about the First Amendment because we held it every Saturday on the sidewalk in front of the county courthouse. Because we were all older citizens, perhaps they saw us as non threatening. We had one guy who was a WW II veteran and stood with us until he turned 92.

up
5 users have voted.

"I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~Dr. Cornel West

"There is no instance of a nation benefitting from prolonged warfare." Sun Tzu

"Propaganda is one hell of a drug." Abby Martin

"Politicians are cowards." Mike Gravel

@gulfgal98

ignored most or all of the so-called Bill of Rights. (The first eight amendments in the BOR are actually a list of certain things that the US government may not do, with the Ninth and Tenth being broaders reservations of rights by the people and the states.)

I absolutely agree with you that Occupy was an exercise of the rights to assemble and the right to make statements without being silenced by state or federal government.

up
4 users have voted.

@Eagles92

or editorials or columns. If that is the distinction being made, fine. Then the head of the NYT, WAPO, et al. are not journalists, either, but publishers of information. That is not the issue. The issue is whether publishers get First Amendment protection. The Pentagon Papers case, whose title was United States v. New York Times Company (or vice versa--I never remember which, should have settled that question.

up
3 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

This is not the only person floating this crap that Trump only charged Assange under the espionage act so that he can't testify about where he got the DNC emails. How people can't see that this is being done because he spilled the beans on country's war crimes is beyond me.

Here's a few from over yonder

No it’s not “chilling to journalism”.

1. Assange is not a journalist.

2. Journalists do not publish leaked material delivered to them by a hostile foreign power with the intent of harming the United States “all the time”.

3. See #1.

And yes, I’ve seen all the arguments and hand-wringing from those who differ. None of it has anything to do with Assange. It has everything to do with any hostile agent labeling itself a “journalistic” enterprise and weaponizing information — and potentially getting away with it.

As we’ve seen just this week, with the espionage charges leveled against Julian Assange, meant to chill investigative journalism and possibly to prevent his extradition to the U.S. so that he cannot be called to testify to the Trump campaign’s possible complicity in his crimes, and bestowing upon his puppet Attorney General powers to cherry-pick and declassify Intelligence Community info selectively to mimic the methods of the once Devin Nunes controlled House Intelligence Committee, Trump will continue to law break with impunity while further endangering our Republic.

The theory is that the DOJ intentionally “overcharged” (my made up word) Assange so that the UK won’t extradite him to the US, thus Assange won’t expose trump. In this way, Trump blocks any Assange testimony or plea deal (that might involve dropping a dime on trump) while looking tough. Rather than trump just pardoning Assange outright to obtain his silence, which would make trump look weak.

Te other point people are making is that Assange will have the right to a fair trial and he can lay out his defense then. No one charged under the EA gets a fair trial. The defense is handcuffed from the get go and no defense is allowed to be offered up. There are many articles on just Chelsea Manning's trial alone that would let people know that. Plus the one I posted above from Risen shows exactly what happened at his trial.

up
6 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

wendy davis's picture

‘Everyone else must take my place’: Assange in letter from British prison, 24 May, 2019

" In a handwritten letter from Belmarsh prison, WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange says he is being denied a chance to defend himself and that elements in the US that “hate truth, liberty and justice” want him extradited and dead.

The letter was sent to independent British journalist Gordon Dimmack. It was dated May 13 – ten days before the US announced 17 additional charges under the Espionage Act against the jailed whistleblower.

In light of the new indictment, Dimmack read out the letter in a YouTube video. A photo of the handwritten note was soon posted online as well.

“I have been isolated from all ability to prepare to defend myself: no laptop, no internet, ever, no computer, no library, so far, but even if I get access it will just be for a half an hour, with everyone else, once a week,” Assange wrote. “The other side? A superpower that has been preparing for 9 years, with hundreds of people and untold millions spent on the case.”

I am defenseless.

“I am unbroken, albeit literally surrounded by murderers, but, the days where I could read and speak and organize to defend myself, my ideals, and my people are over until I am free! Everyone else must take my place,” Assange wrote in the letter.

The US government, or rather, those regrettable elements in it that hate truth, liberty and justice, want to cheat their way into my extradition and death, rather than letting the public hear the truth, for which I have won the highest awards in journalism and have been nominated 7 times for the Nobel Peace Prize,” Assange wrote.

Truth, ultimately, is all we have.

up
4 users have voted.
wendy davis's picture

but as i'd indicated earlier:

Venezuela: Amnesty International in Service of Empire’., roger harris, may 21, counterpunch

up
1 user has voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@wendy davis

“Faced with grave human rights violations, shortages of medicines and food and generalized violence in Venezuela, there is an urgent hunger for justice. The crimes against humanity probably committed by the authorities must not go unpunished.” (Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director at Amnesty International)

This country should be punished for putting illegal sanctions on Venezuela. Every time someone tells me that Venezuelans are dying because they can't get food and medicine I tell them that it's because of our sanctions and other interference in their country.

The funny thing about sanctions is that they are put on in hopes that people will rise up against their leaders. But this country has had sanctions put upon its own citizens and yet here we sit in this pot of water that keeps getting warmer.

The guy who created this organization said he left it after they sold out to the CIA.

up
2 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

wendy davis's picture

@snoopydawg

the DSAs (silicon valley ro khanna and friends) get away with criminalizing the 'corrupt, killing protestors maduro regime' but saying end the sanctions, they hurt the other citizens' and 'no regime change'.

yes to this:

The funny thing about sanctions is that they are put on in hopes that people will rise up against their leaders. But this country has had sanctions put upon its own citizens and yet here we sit in this pot of water that keeps getting warmer.

boiling frogs, but still, the citizens and military of 'the maduro regime' are standing strong so far.

g' night.

up
2 users have voted.
wendy davis's picture

on yesterday, and some of the main questions i still have she didn't quite answer, one being the death penalty. well, others as well, but she (and a clip from the great michael ratner) did address one of mr. wd's big Qs as to assange's citizenship v. the applicability of (the murky) US law espionage act. anyway, luckily there's a transcript, although i always love hearing jen speak.

if corbyn becomes PM: who can say. but at least he'd appoint a new home secretary, but then he'd also shown his true colors about the 'new re-investigation' and extradition to sweden earlier. of course we can hope he'd change his mind, yes? oh, and she'd not mentioned the sweden to US fast track extradition, and i'd thought it was she who first alerted us to that.

anyhoo, as i'd said, amy gets some things right, and julian is one of them. ; )

up
1 user has voted.
wendy davis's picture

@wendy davis

seemed to notice this, i'd finally posted this interview with jennifer robinson as a stand-alone post. i heart jen most sincerely; what a peach of a woman, what a peach of an attorney in his defense, although she's been with him since she'd helped him create the freedom of the press foundation with michael ratner and john perry barlow (may the latter two rest in power).

up
1 user has voted.